Originally created 06/29/02

Across Georgia



Strike force targets drunken, mad drivers

ATLANTA - The state launched a crackdown on drunken drivers and aggressive drivers in the metro area Friday, inaugurating a special program called Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic, or HEAT.

The strike force will involve 24 law enforcement officers.

An aggressive driving conviction carries a fine of up to $5,000 and a six-point assessment against a driver's record. Georgia's drunken-driving law, changed a year ago, allows a court to convict a person for DUI if they have a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 or higher.

Man faces charges over microwaved dog

SNELLVILLE - A 41-year-old Snellville man has been arrested on animal cruelty charges for allegedly threatening a woman by placing her Rottweiler puppy in a microwave oven.

William Terrezz Stephens faces charges from the June 24 incident in which the 7- to 8-week-old puppy was microwaved for 10 to 12 seconds, then stabbed in the side.

Mr. Stephens was charged with two counts of cruelty to animals, one count of burglary and one count of simple assault. The puppy is recovering, authorities said.

Two win Miss Georgia preliminary contests

COLUMBUS - Miss Historic Southern Plains, Joan-Marie Burns, and Miss Spirit of Georgia, Brooke Anderson, were winners Thursday night in the second round of preliminaries of Miss Georgia 2002.

Ms. Burns, 23, is a Georgia Southwestern State University graduate from Albany, and Ms. Anderson is a 24-year-old University of Georgia graduate from Atlanta.

Miss Georgia 2002 runs through today in Columbus.

Teen fleeing police in truck kills driver

CARROLLTON - A 71-year-old Carroll County woman was killed Thursday after her vehicle was struck head-on by a pickup truck involved in a police chase.

Carroll County deputies were chasing a teen-ager who drove off in his father's pickup truck after a fight. The teen ran a stop sign and hit the other vehicle head on.

The woman was identified as Mable McLean Cunningham of Villa Rica. The teen-ager, whose name was not released, faces charges of vehicular homicide, motor vehicle theft, driving under the influence and battery.Police arrest boyfriend of shaken baby's mom

SAVANNAH -The boyfriend of a woman whose 8-month-old child died Friday from what doctors called "shaken baby syndrome" has been arrested.

Alfred Quarterman III, 20, of Pooler was tending the child while the mother, 18-year-old Ebony Perry, was sleeping at her apartment Thursday.

Doctors said Vernon Perry had suffered burns in addition to severe injuries associated with being shaken.

Mr. Quarterman will be arraigned on charges of murder and child abuse, Savannah police said.

Bomb damages mailbox; woman, youths arrested

CLEVELAND -A residential mailbox in northeast Georgia was damaged Friday after a small explosion, apparently the result of a domestic dispute, police said.

Investigators found a crude explosive device made of four aerosol cans, only one of which actually detonated.

Four people were arrested, an adult woman and three juveniles.

No one was injured, and the mailbox was only slightly damaged by fire.